Upskilling Platform Lands $175 Million in Funding

hr tech funding news
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DENVER — With competition for frontline workers fiercer than ever due to structural shifts in the labor market, Guild, a Career Opportunity Platform, today announced a $175 million Series F financing round. The round will accelerate Guild’s ability to capitalize on momentum expanding into dynamic, in-demand sectors — furthering its mission of unlocking life-changing opportunities for America’s workforce.

Demand for frontline workers remains stronger than ever with 65% of workers nationwide seeking new employment despite tumult in global financial markets. Seventy-six percent of workers feel unequipped with the skills needed to thrive in the future of work, and only 28% of those workers feel they have the opportunity to reskill in their current role. That gap explains why 63% of workers cite a lack of opportunity for advancement as a reason they are quitting their jobs and seeking new roles. Noting this dynamic, innovative employers of frontline workers are embracing learning programs and career mobility pathways as essential investments to gain a competitive edge in this landscape.

Guild, which connects forward-thinking employers and their hard-working employees with education and learning programs, career development resources and one-on-one coaching, is uniquely positioned to help companies and workers navigate this changing world. 

“At Guild, we’re grateful to be in a position to serve the 100+ million Americans who are in need of reskilling to succeed in the economy of tomorrow,” said Guild CEO Rachel Romer Carlson. “We’re helping companies build the workforce of the future, while providing frontline workers access to the education, skills and career pathways to build a better future for themselves and their families.”

Wellington Management, which is leading this round, has a long history of partnering with pension funds to manage the retirement assets of American workers.

“Guild’s leading Career Opportunity Platform is raising the bar for the employee experience, the fastest growing segment of the HR stack,” said Matt Witheiler, Consumer/Tech Sector Lead with Wellington Management. “Their innovative approach, supported by deep payments and analytics infrastructure, is beginning to deliver positive ROI and social impact. We’re excited about the momentum Guild is creating.”

Additional Guild investors include current employer partners of Guild’s such as Bon Secours Mercy Health, who recognize the significant role of education, skilling and career mobility in helping to address the critical health care worker shortage. Others like Citi Impact Fund from the financial services industry have also invested in Guild, given their sector’s major workforce transformation and talent shortages. Global media leader Oprah Winfrey has also invested, supporting her long-standing commitment to creating educational opportunities. 

“I believe deeply in the power of education to change the trajectory of a person’s life, and Guild is creating a more equitable path to quality education,” said Winfrey.  

These new investors join existing Guild investors, including Bessemer Venture Partners, D1, Felicis, FPV, General Catalyst, Iconiq Capital, Redpoint and Silicon Valley Bank, bringing up Guild’s valuation to $4.4 billion.

In the first few months of 2022 alone, Guild’s impact has significantly expanded across the retail, hospitality and healthcare verticals, launching partnerships with employers including Hilton, PepsiCo, Kohl’s, Tyson Foods, Macy’s, Herschend Enterprises, UCHealth, Sentara and Children’s Hospital Colorado. As a result, nearly 5 million workers gained access to Guild’s Career Opportunity Platform over the course of the last year.

In addition to building new partnerships, Guild has expanded its impact with large employers and their employees by growing the number of Guild members — working adults who engage with Guild’s Career Opportunity Platform — by 140% since June 2021. Guild has helped to unlock opportunity and career mobility for employees — those working with Guild have a 2X higher likelihood of an annual role change compared to their peers not working with Guild. To hear first-hand accounts of Guild’s impact on the lives of frontline employees, read more here.

This latest round of funding will allow Guild to build on this momentum and continue helping employers invest in their employees in dynamic, in-demand sectors, such as healthcare and financial services, where Guild has established market leadership. In addition, Guild will use the funding to build out its career opportunity ecosystem to continue serving frontline employees with the best-in-class solutions that support employees as they experience career mobility. This includes exploring ways to offer workers tools that remove barriers to their education and career growth such as occupational assessments, childcare solutions, employer loan repayment programs, financial wellness tools and more. 

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